The Philadelphia Personal Injury Law Blog

November 2012 Archives

No Criminal Charges for Mother of Child Mauled at Zoo

As if witnessing a child's death wasn't bad enough for the Pittsburgh mom. Elizabeth Derkosh recently had to face a criminal investigation by a prosecutor to determine whether she would face charges related to her son's death at the Pittsburgh Zoo.

Luckily for the mom, Allegheny County District Attorney Stephen Zappala found no fault at the hands of the mother.

At least no criminal fault.

Tyler Perry Sued for 'Stealing' Philadelphia Author's Idea

Tyler Perry is being sued in Philadelphia court for allegedly ripping someone’s idea for use in his movie “Good Deeds,” reports Reuters.

The filmmaker is being sued by Terri Donald, who is better known under her pen-name TLO Red’ness. Donald alleges that Perry stole her idea, which first appeared in her book “Bad Apples Can Be Good Fruit.” In her lawsuit, she alleges that she sent Perry’s company a copy of the book before production began.

How to Prevent Bounce House Lawsuits

If you've had a party for kids, you might have rented an inflatable bounce house. Or maybe you went to one of those places that has a number of bounce houses -- along with rooms to eat your pizza and cake.

While you were choking down that Costco birthday cake, you may not have considered that interestingly, not all of these facilities or rental companies have complex liability waivers or other documents to protect themselves from the inevitable.

It seems like a great business to buy several bounce units and set up a kids' play facility, but what many don't realize is the astronomical liability that comes with dealing with children. Your children.

Officer Moses Walker's Family Sues Parole Board

The family of a slain Philadelphia police officer has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole, reports CBS Philly.

The wrongful death lawsuit claims that the parole board was negligent in allowing Rafael Jones to be paroled. In a wrongful death lawsuit, the survivors of the victim sue an individual or company for negligence or misconduct that caused the death of their loved one.

The lawsuit cites flaws in the system, pointing to the fact that Jones was supposed to be under house arrest at the time he shot and killed Philadelphia Police Officer Moses Walker.

Black Friday: Deals and Dangers

With Black Friday approaching this week, retailers need to arm themselves for a lot more than just the crowds.

Rock bottom prices and swarms of crowds can make for chaotic situations. Remember the New York Walmart stampede in 2008 that resulted in the death of a Wal-Mart worker, Jdimytai Damour?

That sad case brought about a settlement between Walmart and the Nassau County District Attorney's office, where the retailer agreed to adopt better crowd management techniques in its New York stores.

Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl Comments on Zoo Mauling

Bringing attention back to the horrific tale of the boy who was mauled at the Pittsburgh Zoo a few weeks ago, witnesses are coming forward and saying that the zoo's response was inadequate when the mauling happened.

These witnesses recently gave some insight into the zoo mauling and what really happened as they saw it, to Pittsburgh's KDKA News.

Additionally, the Mayor of Pittsburgh has spoken out, calling for changes to the zoo, in light of the attack on the young boy, reports KDKA.

SEPTA Bus Crash Injures 11 in Olney

Early Monday morning, a collision between a SEPTA bus and a car left eleven injured, according to reports from CBS Philadelphia.

According to the reports, eleven people were sent to the hospital with injuries. The accident occurred at the intersection of 2nd street and Olney Avenue.

Witnesses say that the accident happened when a woman driving a white sedan crashed into the bus. She was apparently driving at a high speed and drove through a red light, early witness accounts say.

Phillies, GM Ruben Amaro Sued for Defamation by Ali Modami

The Phillies and General Manager Ruben Amaro Jr. are being sued by the team's former batting practice pitcher Ali Modami, reports SB Nation.

This lawsuit came about earlier this week, as Modami claimed the Phillies manager had defamed him and ruined his job prospects.

Modami's connection to the Phillies dates back to 2007. Amaro let him go in 2011, when he made changes to the team's hitting program, according to SB Nation.

Settlement Details Released in UPMC Hamot Organ-Harvesting Case

Details of a settlement against UPMC Hamot have emerged this week, as the Erie Times-News reports that the parties have agreed to a $1.2 million payout.

The wrongful death lawsuit, which was heard in federal court, dealt with the harvesting of organs. The lawsuit claimed that the hospital, Hamot Medical Center in Erie, which apparently was unaffiliated with UPMC at the time of the alleged event, hastened the death of an 18-year old man, in order to harvest his organs.

Also named in the lawsuit was the Center for Organ Recovery and Education, reports The Associated Press.

Toddler Mauled by African Painted Dogs at Pittsburgh Zoo

This weekend, many patrons of the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium witnessed sheer horror as a child was mauled to death by African painted dogs.

The attack happened on Sunday morning, reports CBS Pittsburgh. The two-year old victim was visiting the zoo with his mother. The mother put the boy on the railing so that he could get a better view of the dogs. He lost balance on the railing and fell over eleven feet into the dog pen.

According to reports, he was attacked by eleven dogs. Ten of the eleven dogs were secured by zoo staff. One dog was shot at the scene.

Now, the question that authorities are asking is whether the boy died from the fall or from the attack.

New Charges in Jerry Sandusky Scandal; More Lawsuits to Come?

Big news coming out of Penn State today. Former university president Graham B. Spanier has been charged with eight criminal counts, reports The Philadelphia Inquirer. And he isn't the only one charged today. Fellow ex-Penn State officials Tim Curley and Gary Schultz are now facing additional charges as well.

Curley was Penn State's athletic director. Schultz was the university's senior vice president.

These charges come after the Jerry Sandusky scandal, in which the former assistant coach was convicted of sexually abusing young boys. He was sentenced to 30 to 60 years in prison.

Sandusky's abuse took place over several years. The abuse was brought to the attention of university officials, as some of the acts took place on school grounds.